Junji Ito manga -

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Cosmos

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Junji Ito is pretty much Japan's Stephen King. Even if you don't like manga, you just have to read his works if you have even a passing interest in horror. You might even recognize some of his work even if you've never heard of him before:

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Although he has created a few actual series, Junji Ito mostly specializes in short, stand-alone stories. Body horror is pretty much the staple of all of his stuff, as you can see in the above pictures.

A complete index of his works and where you can read them can be found here; also, the vast majority of his short stories can be read here. I'll give some recommendations about which ones you should definitely read first!
  • The Enigma of Amigara Fault: An earthquake leads to the discovery of a mountainside full of human-shaped holes, which soon attract people from all over Japan as they're convinced that the holes are shaped specifically for them. This is probably Ito's most famous work, and for good reason. You should definitely read this story first if you want a taste of what the rest of his stories are like.
  • Uzumaki: Not a one shot, but rather a collection of inter-connected stories that all revolve around a town that's been cursed by spirals. Uzumaki is tied with The Enigma of Amigara Fault for being Ito's most famous and beloved work.
  • Tomie: A series of macabre stories that all focus on Tomie, a gorgeous yet incredibly vain and petty girl who seemingly can't die. Wherever she goes she spreads lust, murder, and chaos.
  • Mimi's Ghost Stories: Six connected stories that revolve around a girl named Mimi and the strange, unnatural events that seem to follow her wherever she goes.
  • The Back Alley: A boy rents a room from a family and hears the sound of children playing in the back alley late at night.
  • The Thing That Drifted Ashore: A strange, deep-sea monster washes up on the beach.
  • Human Chair: An author, having trouble writing due to her uncomfortable desk chair, goes on a search for a new chair.
  • Red Turtleneck: A man struggles to hold his almost-decapitated head to his neck without severing nerves or blood vessels.
  • Hanging Balloons: After an idol’s suicide, Tokyo’s citizens are tormented by malicious balloon versions of their own heads that have nooses instead of strings.
  • The Chill: A boy is curious about his sick neighbor, which leads him to question his grandfather’s death.
  • Long Dream: A man is hospitalized for dreams that continue to feel longer and longer until he is dreaming for millennia.
 
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Cosmos

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@Jashinist recommended I pick up Uzumaki a while back, I haven't finished it yet :oops: (I'm up to the chapter with the jack-in-the-box kid) but I'm loving it so far. One tip I will leave for anyone looking to get into this guy is STAY THE FUCK AWAY FROM GLYCERIDE.

Uzumaki is one of my favorite manga, period. It's so subtly creepy and twisted! I still get a little nervous around spirals sometimes, haha.

And yeah, Glyceride is fucking disgusting. It's not even scary, it just makes you feel sick to your stomach. Because I hate myself, I felt morbidly compelled to look up the panel that made me lose my appetite for three days. And because I want everyone to suffer with me, I'm posting it here.

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Dr. Meme

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Uzumaki gives me a headache. I can't read it.
 

Hat

Tranny Sayaka Miki
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Uzumaki is one of my favorite manga, period. It's so subtly creepy and twisted! I still get a little nervous around spirals sometimes, haha.

And yeah, Glyceride is fucking disgusting. It's not even scary, it just makes you feel sick to your stomach. Because I hate myself, I felt morbidly compelled to look up the panel that made me lose my appetite for three days. And because I want everyone to suffer with me, I'm posting it here.

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Is this supposed to be taken seriously, or does the artist have a really bizarre sense of humor?
 

nonnewtonian

Straight Outta Vellie
kiwifarms.net
Thanks for the list! I've always wanted to read more of Junji Ito's stuff.
Oddly enough, Glyceride had no effect on me the first time I read it, but now I can't look at it without my stomach turning.
 

ATM

True & Honest Fan
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His Tomie series is excellent, really worth reading in its entirety. Dark Horse published most of the stories compiled in the first 2 volumes of Museum of Terror. They were written over a period of about 13 years, you can really see how his art style develops. Hellstar Remina is also pretty cool, I like the flying dudes.
 

The Fair Lady

Blind spider waifu
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Fucking love Ito. I've read almost all of his work. Admittedly, I stopped early on with Tomie, but I'll pick it back up eventually.
 

BatNapalm

Killed Captain Clown
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I've always loved horror comics and Ito is definitely in my top 5 mangaka.

Sadly, I haven't really read anything from him in over three years because I was reasonably sure I'd read everything of his that was translated into English (and I haven't checked to see if any new translations of his work has ever come out, officially or unofficially). I think the last Ito thing I read was either Hellstar Remina (which is goofy as shit but I loved it) or Black Paradox.

Also, there should be more anime adaptations of his stuff. I quite enjoyed the one for Gyo even though it gets a lot of hate.
 

Cosmos

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Also, there should be more anime adaptations of his stuff. I quite enjoyed the one for Gyo even though it gets a lot of hate.

I've always wondered why there have never been any anime adaptations of his work (aside from Gyo) when they're so popular. Like, I would give up one of my kidneys to see an anthology series of his short stories (where every episode is a different story, I mean). I heard someone say that it may be because of his style; it's so incredibly distinctive that it'd be hard to recapture it in an anime. And unfortunately, I have to agree with that. But it'd be interesting seeing how the surrealism and body horror in his works would translate to animation.

Also, if you're looking for new releases, the scanlation team Slug Chicks has taken over translating and releasing his stuff. Definitely keep an eye on them!
 

BatNapalm

Killed Captain Clown
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Two of my favorite Junji Ito anthology stories are "Army of One" and "Falling."

I was actually never that huge on Tomie or the Souichi stories even though they're some of his most well-known stuff.
 

Arrosoir

Tiny autist it is.
kiwifarms.net
I think I've read everything of his available in English, he's excellent.
I've always wondered why there have never been any anime adaptations of his work (aside from Gyo) when they're so popular. Like, I would give up one of my kidneys to see an anthology series of his short stories (where every episode is a different story, I mean). I heard someone say that it may be because of his style; it's so incredibly distinctive that it'd be hard to recapture it in an anime. And unfortunately, I have to agree with that. But it'd be interesting seeing how the surrealism and body horror in his works would translate to animation.

Also, if you're looking for new releases, the scanlation team Slug Chicks has taken over translating and releasing his stuff. Definitely keep an eye on them!
Not Ito related, but have you ever watched Yame Shibai? It's show released in very short installments based around Japanese urban legends and horror stories. The art style is quite odd and distinct from other anime but it's similar to Ito's short story collections in that they tend to end very abruptly and without any sort of clear explanation for what happened.
 

Venusaur

Kiwi Farms Produce Inspector
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Oh this guy... I love his stuff so much. If I had to pick a favorite it would be Hellstar Remina... You could describe it as Galactus meets Lovecraft, and the climax does get a bit goofy in some bits, but I love the over all feeling of cosmic doom in that story.
 
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